Dave Woodhall on Villa’s continued slump.
Another Saturday afternoon, another defeat. It’s getting a bit tedious now.
There’s not much you can say when the team appear to be beaten before they step onto the pitch and morale is so low throughout the club. This season is turning into one horror show after another but at least there isn’t long left until we can consign it all to history and vow to spend the summer putting things right so that nothing like this will ever happen again. You’ve heard all that before, haven’t you?
Swansea were the latest team to find beating Villa a matter of routine. They even let Gabby Agbonlahor equalise in the first half just to give us a glimmer of hope before stepping up the gear that was necessary to kill the match off. More supporters than at the last away game turned on Paul Lambert – the final games of the campaign, away at Manchester City and Spurs, could be open season on a Villa managerial career that began with such promise but seems to have been fatally flawed in recent weeks.
In the meantime Villa have got to get a point or preferably three from Hull at home on Saturday to be able to go into the last week of the season free from any relegation worries. The odds are against us going down but the fact that we can still be talking about such a possibility – again – two years into the much-vaunted but seemingly secretive Lambert project shows that there have to be some long and hard decisions made once the final whistle has gone at White Hart Lane.
Lambert’s position is becoming increasingly untenable and Randy Lerner’s muddled statement last weekend was the clearest sign that he doesn’t intend to stick round any longer than is necessary. The rumoured incoming owners may have been denied but there’s surely no doubt that the current incumbent is open to offers in a way that he might not have been even a couple of months ago.
But whatever the future might hold, the present looks distinctly uncomfortable. One point from six games, a team that’s got used to losing, a manager who looks doomed and an owner who probably doesn’t want us. It’s not exactly an inspiring scenario as we embark on the most important two weeks in the Villa’s recent history.